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The UK seaside village you've never heard of named one of Britain's best commuter 'towns'


Imagine leaving the office in the city and heading straight for the beach, that’s the reality if you live in this little-known commuter spot that boasts the closest beaches to London.

The usual suspects for getaways from the capital tend to include Brighton and Margate. However, there is a sandy beach that often slips under the radar that visitors will argue is far superior.

Tucked neatly between Leigh-on-Sea and Westcliff, Chalkwell is the lesser-known cousin with bags full of charm, character and things to do.

Although the town is small in size, it makes up for it by providing a platform for exploration offering visitors a chance to explore the beaches of the area, without sharing the spot with thousands of others.

The beautiful beach was awarded a Seaside award from Keep Britain Tidy in 2022.

The beautiful beach was awarded a Seaside award from Keep Britain Tidy in 2022. According to Visit Southend Chalkwell is “great for long refreshing walks” and “offers a relaxing getaway from the hustle and bustle of the main seaside strip”.

The site continues: “There are a number of cafes and kiosks selling all the usual coastal treats and supplies, like buckets and spades, as well as food and drink. Chalkwell train station is just a five-minute walk away.”

From Fenchurch Street in London to Chalkwell Station it’s just 49 minutes on the train at only £14.20 making it one of the quickest and cheapest places to get to for some sand and sea.

Just under 10,000 people call the settlement home and enjoy the sea air from the edges of the north bank of the Thames estuary emptying into the English Channel.

Standing proudly on the shoreline of the historic area is a Crow Stone, an obelisk-like marker which in days gone by marked the boundary of the maritime rights of the City of London.

A short walk away from the beach is Surf, a beachside cabin offering all your beach favourites, plus a few exciting extras, MyLondon reports.

Their ‘Surf Bubble Pots’ offer bubble and squeak topped with a variety of breakfast toppings, including sausage, bacon and egg. It doesn’t get more ‘East End day trip’ than that.

As Chalkwell is smaller than nearby towns, there are fewer restaurants but there are still good options to choose from.

Recently refurbished Saltwater Café is a superb spot right next to Chalkwell station, offering salt beef bagels, breakfast bagels and a selection of teas, coffees and, of course, ice creams.

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